Friday 8 July 2022

1975 Bordeaux - Finally Dried Out?

I started tasting wines in a more serious way in 1988/89 (my first notebook is from 1991 (and I am now on my 59th)) and I remember reading about the stern 75 Bordeaux that never would come around. The verdict then were that the fruit would die long before the tannins (except for some wines like Petrus...). 

"For a decade or more, pundits have been writing down the 1975 claret vintage: too tannic, too austere, too dry, too tough for its own good"
Clive Coates: Grands Vins (1996)

"There are a number of badly made, excessively tannic wines where the fruit has already dried out and the color has become brown. I have always been struck by the tremendous difference in the quality of wines in this vintage"
Robert Parker: Bordeaux (1998)

Fast forward to 2022. M generously opened 12 bottles of 1975 (although two bottles (without labels) were of the 1970 vintage when the corks were drawn).
These 1975 bottles were all healthy and in most cases mature but definitely not overly so. These could still go on for several years. With the tannin rumour still connected with this vintage, these can be bought for a resonable price. 
The best -75 I have tasted is La Mission Haut Brion, a near perfect wine.

Flight I
1970 Château Grand Mayne 
One of the bottles that was sold as a 1975 (no label) but turned out to be a 1970. 
A large scaled, open, mature nose with lots of mushrooms, forest floor, old leather and lacquer. Very, very good.
The taste is round and mature with notes of dried plums, undergrowth and old chocolate. A fine dried up sweetness.
89p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château La-Tour-du-Pin-Figeac
A medium, deep, dry nose with notes of smoke, dried up black currants, gravel and dog fur. Fully mature and maybe a tad more than that.
The taste is tight and dry with notes of smoke, dried up black berries, gravel and old leather. Good. 
85p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Clos Rene
Sadly corked.
No rating   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Troplong Mondot
A large scaled, smoky nose with notes of cassis, plums, clean stables and cigarr smoke. A fine depth.
The taste is fine, even refined, with notes of tobacco, plums, earth and iron. A fine dryness in the finish. Very, very good.
89p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Magdelaine
A deep, earthy nose with notes of tobacco, dog fur and dry chocolate. A touch of VA. A fine dried up sweetness.
The taste is mature and steady with notes of bakelite, plums, earth and tobacco. Long and fresh. Will hold for many years to come.
90p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Soutard
A cool, deep nose with fine black fruit in the shape of plums, blackberries and additional notes of asphalt, tobacco and clean stables. Very fine.
The taste is still on the young side of things - as Soutard usually is - with perky tannins, fine black fruits and a long, taut finish. 5+ years.
92p   (tasted 2022/07)

Flight II
1970 Château Haut Bailly
Second bottle (without a label) sold as a 1975 but turned out to be a 1970. 
A fresh, open, mature nose with notes of cassis, sweet tobacco, dried strawberries and fresh stables. Very fine.
The taste is pure and silky with notes of iron, tiles, tobacco and a fine mix of red and black currants. A very fine dried up sweetness. Long. Perfectly mature.
91p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Gloria
A tight, irony nose with notes of sand, damsons, dried black currants and gravel. A bit taut. Not a charmer.
The taste is straight forward bit a nice concentration and cool, dry black fruit. Old school. A decent lenght with a nice warmth. Good.
85p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château de Pez
A surprise! The nose is deep, earthy and very fine with notes of mushrooms, dried black currants, meat and Christmas spices. Lively. Very fine.
The taste is rich and concentrated with a great black fruit, velvety tannins, a fine structure and a long, lingering finish. This could still be cellared for 8+ years.
93p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Les Ormes de Pez
A soft, mature nose with fine notes of moist earth, pipe tobacco, iron and some meaty scents. A hint of VA. Fully mature.
The taste has more structure and power with fine black fruits, some tannins and a long, balanced finish. Very, very good.
89p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Malartic Lagraviére
A sandy, deep nose with notes of forest floor, smoke, black currants and tobacco. A very fine maturity.
The taste is mature and finely structured with notes of dried black currants, tobacco, smoke and mushrooms. Very long. 
90p   (tasted 2022/07)

1975 Château Calon-Segur
A very deep, still tight nose with notes of cool black currants, dry licorice, forest floor, asphalt and fine tobacco. Still not fully mature.
The taste is tight and concentrated with gorgeous black fruit, perky tannins and a long, long finish. This still needs 5+ years in the cellar. Great wine.
94p   (tasted 2022/07)

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